Brian McCombie

After he signed the new Wisconsin budget this past June, Gov. Scott Walker left the stage set up at Fox Valley Metal-Tech Inc., in Green Bay, while John Mellencamp's "Small Town" played over loudspeakers. It's a song that speaks to small-town values of responsibility and thrift, qualities Walker and his Republican colleagues call their own. But was the song choice also a warning? more

Sep 8, 2011 2:00 PM News


Pierre-Paul Pariseau

"Run it like a business. Improve customer service. Fast turnaround times". Those are the guiding concepts in a draft plan to reorganize the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) into a "charter agency." Dated May 9, 2011, the "Organizational Effectiveness Communication Plan" was obtained by the "Milwaukee Journal Sentinel" in May and has been widely circulated. more

Jun 9, 2011 2:00 PM News


Mark Godfrey

Hugh Iltis, now 84, remembers that starting a Wisconsin chapter of the Nature Conservancy was surprisingly difficult. When first approached in the mid-1950s, the embryonic national chapter, strife-ridden and overwhelmed, "discouraged it as much as they could." But in 1960, Iltis and Gene Roark tried again, and the Nature Conservancy of Wisconsin was born. more

Feb 4, 2010 3:00 PM News

It was the strangest sensation Lynda Barry ever felt: a near-constant vibration within her body. "You know how sometimes, around your eye, you'll get this little tic that kind of wiggles?" says Barry, of Footville, Wis., south of Janesville. "It was more

Sep 10, 2009 2:00 PM News 1 Comments

The print edition of "Newsweek" magazine for May 18, 2009, seemed to implicate Wisconsin as the birthplace of swine flu, which as of May 29 had infected some 1,370 Wisconsinites, 100 of those in Dane County. more

May 28, 2009 2:00 PM News


Andy Olsen

A proposed bill to streamline regulations for small to mid-size wind energy developments is backed by clean energy advocates but questioned by groups seeking to ensure the safety of wildlife. more

May 7, 2009 2:00 PM News

Near the end of 2008, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) released its draft plan for managing chronic wasting disease (CWD) over the next 10 years. The state's Natural Resources Board has already endorsed one feature of the plan, agreeing in January to a statewide ban on deer baiting and feeding, and passing on that recommendation to the Legislature. But Madison activist John Stauber, who's led the charge to get the state to see CWD as a human health risk, thinks the plan is doomed to fail. more

Feb 12, 2009 3:00 PM News

Katie Nekola couldn't be happier. On Tuesday, the state Public Service Commission voted 3-0 against Alliant Energy Corporation's controversial $1.26 billion electrical generating plant in Cassville, Wis. more

Nov 13, 2008 3:00 PM News

Last year, Dane County grain farmer Neil Schlough pulled 12 acres of his land out of the federal Conservation Reserve Program. Schlough, who participated in CRP for 20 years, grew tired of constraints on the use of his land. His natural grasses were being lost to scrubby trees and noxious weeds. And program rules made it hard even to maintain walking trails. more

Jul 10, 2008 2:00 PM News

This January, in Monona Bay, the Yahara Fishing Club did something it hadn't been able to do for several years: Hold an ice fishing event for kids. The groups schedules the event every winter, but the scarcity of ice cover on Madison-area lakes has made the event hit or miss. Mostly miss. more

Apr 18, 2008 2:01 PM Isthmus Cover Stories

Kelsey Brasseur had knocked on just a handful of doors in Ashland, Wis., before making a sale. Well, not a sale, exactly, but an exchange: of light bulbs and environmental ideas. more

Feb 14, 2008 4:00 PM News

Environmentalists and conservationists hailed passage of the new state budget, which included a 40% increase in the Knowles-Nelson Stewardship Fund. Starting in 2011, the state will increase the amount it gives annually to the fund from $60 million to $86 million, for the next decade. more

Jan 10, 2008 4:00 PM News

On the Mississippi River near Cassville, John Lyons of the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources is looking for Asian carp. Twice a summer for the last five years, Lyons has dragged the river bottom with trammel nets, seined the near shore, and electroshocked the shallows, in search of silver and bighead carp. more

Dec 13, 2007 4:00 PM News

In June of this year, news stories proclaimed that the bald eagle was flying so high it was no longer considered endangered under the federal Endangered Species Act. Within a few days, wounded and crippled bald eagles started arriving at Marge Gibson's rehabilitation facility in Antigo, their wing bones shattered by lead shot, their feathers in tatters. more

Sep 7, 2007 3:26 PM Isthmus Cover Stories

Every summer, Sue Jones hears the complaints from local canoeists and kayakers: Madison-area lakes are too crowded; the paddlers are getting pushed around on the waters, and something needs to be done. more

Jun 14, 2007 7:45 PM Isthmus Cover Stories

In the Madison area, there are many youth-oriented programs to connect kids with nature. Here's a few: more

May 3, 2007 7:59 PM Isthmus Parents

It's a truism as old as the woods: If you want to help kids develop an appreciation for nature, you have to get them outdoors. That's why places like the Boston School Forest - or the forest maintained by the Madison school district - exist. more

May 3, 2007 7:50 PM Isthmus Parents

Last year, when he heard the Tigerton Lumber Company wanted to lease thousands of acres of its land to deer hunters in Shawano and Waupaca counties, Don Goers wasn't worried. These lands had been open to the public for decades, and the 75-year-old Shawano resident had hunted and trapped on them much of his life. more

Aug 4, 2006 5:00 PM News